It’s hard to believe that in just a few months the online casino industry will have been active across for different decades. As an industry, iGaming has transformed since Microgaming programmed the first online casino game in the mid-90s. And, with technology like VR, 5G and AI, the future looks pretty bright, especially as total online revenue is expected to more than double by the middle of the next decade.
Yet, there are some challenges to the business of running online casinos, and we look at five key areas they will have to address below:
Online casinos have done a good job of operating in countries, like Germany and Australia, where there are legal grey areas, and countries like Ireland, where the law has not yet caught up with the idea of internet gambling. The truth is that many governments and opposition parties have threatened regulations that might hamstring the casino industry in terms of marketing, but so far these have not been realised. The casino industry has, however, been pre-emptively setting down its own rules in these areas, pushing areas such as responsible gaming without regulators intervention.
The thing that has the bigwig bosses in Las Vegas and Macau more worried than anything else: The younger generation simply don’t like classic casino games like those before. Online casinos have an advantage, as you can see here at https://www.casino.com/uk/blackjack/, because they can offer multiple variants of traditional games and create new games with certain twists. But as millennials and Generation Y reach maturity, it still remains an issue. Other areas being explored is to monetise video games, essentially creating a range of video games you can play and bet on.
An interesting challenge, as casinos are usually at the forefront of facilitating innovative payment methods. To date, no major online casino company accepts Bitcoin or other crypto. One of the issues is that regulators like the UKGC want a certain bit of transparency when it comes to funding of accounts. With crypto, that’s obviously a lot more difficult to ascertain. At a guess, online casinos will track closely what goes on with the likes of Facebook’s Libra, and see how authorities take to that over the coming years.
There is a massive appetite for online gambling, and that looks like it will increase as the US gambling laws begin to liberalise on a state by state basis. Yet, it’s ridiculously easy to build and launch an online casino site. The problem does not lie with the sites themselves; rather, it’s at the development level where games are created and picked up by the operators. If there are too many casinos, the quality of the games could suffer.
eSports and Video Games
We mentioned earlier that millennials tend eschew the idea of traditional casino games, but there is also a budding industry in betting on eSports and video game tournaments like Fortnite. Much of this comes under the purview of betting companies (owned by casinos and vice versa), but we have seen with the Grand Theft Auto 5 casino update that there as an appetite for video game companies to monetise the popularity of their wares. There have been, as stated, moves by casino companies to move into the realm of video games, but this might be the biggest challenge of all in the coming decade and beyond.